Diabetics - 5 New Year’s Tips for Staying Healthy 2020

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Living with diabetes? You’re not alone. If you’re making choices to manage diabetes in healthy ways, you’re on the right track. Keep it up.

If you’re not, now is always a good time to start making choices to control blood sugar levels and protect your health.

So what’s up with diabetes in 2020? 

  • An estimated 30 million people in the United States have type 2 diabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 
  • Another 84 million people have pre-diabetes, and most don’t know it yet. 
  • By 2050, health experts predict 1 in 3 adults will have type 2 diabetes.

If you have diabetes, do everything you can to keep your blood sugar levels under control and protect your health. Left unchecked, diabetes can lead to nerve damage, kidney failure, vision loss, heart disease, amputations, or worse. And it doesn’t have to be that way.

Want to keep diabetes in check? Here are 5 things you can do to stay healthy:

1. Check your blood sugar level regularly

If you don’t have diabetes, normal blood sugar levels after not eating for 8 hours is about 70 to 99 mg/dL. Just two hours after eating, a normal blood sugar level is less than 140 mg/dL.

If you have diabetes, normal blood sugar levels after not eating for 8 hours is 80 to 130 mg/dL. Just two hours after eating, a normal blood sugar level is less than 180 mg/dL.

2. Be more active

Aim for 30 to 60 minutes of moderate physical activity per day. Your body uses sugar and carbohydrates for energy, which helps lower blood sugar levels. Take a walk around the block at the office or in your neighborhood. Workout at the gym. Or if you’re out of shape, start with a few minutes of exercise and try to do a little more each week.

3. Improve your diet

It’s the biggest challenge for most people, even without diabetes. If you want to eat healthier to manage blood sugar levels skip the sweet treats, high-carb and high-starch foods that cause rapid spikes in blood sugar levels. Instead, eat more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, fish, and legumes.

Cook at home using fresh ingredients, or check out the selection of Diabetic-Friendly meals made from fresh ingredients.

4. Practice preventive care

That means you should see your dentist at least twice a year for cleaning, and any necessary dental work. Visit your doctor at least once a year for an annual check up, biometric screening, and blood test to measure blood sugar levels. Most adults should also get the flu vaccine.

5. Be prepared for diabetic-related problems

Even if you’re doing everything right to protect your health, manage diabetes, and keep your blood sugar levels under control, stuff happens. You miss too many meals. You get sick. You develop sores on your feet. Know the warning signs and be prepared to take action.